Finding the Middle Ground in a Politically Polarized World

To gauge whether — and how — to jump into the political fray, business leaders should consider an issue’s importance to company financial performance and relevance to stated values.

Consumers and employees now expect companies to engage on social, environmental, and economic issues that are part of the political discourse (think immigration, climate change, and trade). Given how politically polarized the world has become, that can put business leaders in a bind.

Here’s the dilemma as it’s usually understood: They can take a political stand and risk upsetting some consumers or employees, igniting oppositional behavior such as boycotts and ...

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